Living with type 1 diabetes will never be easy (until they find the right cure, of course), but there are certain things we can do right now to make it easier and better to compensate.
1. Use the same size dishes for starchy foods
Don’t like weighing everything you eat? When it comes to starchy foods like rice, oatmeal, corn porridge, potatoes, etc. – you can cancel the measurement step without sacrificing carb counting accuracy by using the same container or bowl for that meal.
Just weigh the food once in a certain dish, then use it for that food. So you can quickly assemble a lunch of potatoes with chops to work in the morning without weighing, and then just pin up the standard amount of bolus insulin laid down for this container and type of food.
2. Sports before meals
We’ve all been taught in the doctor’s office that we should “feed for exercise” by eating ahead of time and reducing or skipping the dose of insulin for meals. Instead, try exercising before meals. This way you will have less fast-acting insulin in your blood, which is still active when you start jumping rope/running, etc., and the risk of hypoglycemia is much lower.
This approach can save you from constantly worrying about low blood sugar during your workout.
3. Eat the same (mostly) for breakfast, snacks and lunch
We certainly do not encourage you to eat the same foods every day. It’s boring. But in general, eating similar foods every day for two or three meals can make blood sugar control much easier because you know exactly how much insulin you need for those meals.
Dinner may be the meal that will give you the most enjoyment and flexibility. Dinner we usually eat at home and this meal is associated with some kind of relaxation, so you will not feel like you are on a diet.
Read more about this diet plan: Compensating for Diabetes: “Carbohydrate Schedule” for Good Sugars
For 3 out of 5 of these meals, you will know exactly how much insulin you need, so severe fluctuations and unpredictability in blood sugar levels are less likely.
4.Use very specific products to treat low blood sugar
Well, it’s easy. Don’t think of low blood sugar as a time to eat whatever you want! Use only the right food with fast carbohydrates.
When there are no specially prepared fast-acting carbohydrates, we tend to choose foods that contain much more carbohydrates, too much fat or protein. This does not allow the glycemia to rise quickly enough or may lead to post- hypoglycemic hyperglycemia.
Choose a couple of “healing” foods that you consider to be medicine and put these foods in reserve in your wallet, on your desk, on your nightstand, and in your car.
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5. Don’t Eat Carbs Just Because They’re Right
If you don’t like some “healthy” cereal…stop eating it! You don’t have to cut all carbs to benefit from a low carb diet, but you’ll certainly make your blood sugar management easier if you think about which carbs you’re comfortable skipping and which carbs you love the most.
Make room for the carbs you love the most by cutting back on carbs at other meals. Crazy about spaghetti with tomatoes for dinner, but hate oatmeal in the morning? Okay, then eat something protein for breakfast, and for dinner, you can afford your favorite carbohydrates.
Don’t want to give up ice cream? Okay, then make sure your lunch is made up of protein, fat, and vegetables so you can save some carbs for dessert.
6. Identify Your Worst Sugar Habit
Is there anything you keep doing throughout the day that leads to a blood sugar rollercoaster? Whatever your habit is, it could be sabotaging your blood sugar goals, identify it and strategize to change it.
If you adjust habits one at a time, getting rid of the worst ones first, sugars will improve without much stress for you.
7. Create a plaid pillow
Eat a salad at the start of your meal. This will create a fiber cushion for you, which will prevent the sugars from being absorbed quickly, which means that the compensation will go smoothly.
These are not hard and fast rules, but these 7 things will help make life with type 1 diabetes easier and also lead to better glycated hemoglobin without making diabetes management the center of your universe.